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Boyes Turner’s medical negligence team secured a compensation settlement of £290,000 for a man who suffered life-threatening injuries following negligently performed bowel surgery.

Our client was referred by his GP to hospital with a two month history of bleeding from the rectum. He had a family history of cancer of the colon. He underwent a colonoscopy which revealed a large mass in his rectum with features of rectal cancer. He had surgery to remove the cancer, but had significant abdominal pain after the operation. He was reviewed by a specialist registrar who believed that the pain was caused by leaking of bowel contents from the surgery site. The next day an emergency laparotomy (abdominal surgery) was carried out which revealed a leak from the coloanal suture line (where the colon had been attached to the anus after the diseased area of rectum had been removed). A colostomy was formed to allow the colon to heal.  

After the further surgery, our client developed pulmonary oedema and his family were told that he might not survive. He suffered septic shock from faecal peritonitis and needed maximum organ support for multi-system failure, including acute respiratory distress syndrome and an acute renal (kidney) injury. He finally recovered and was discharged from hospital two months after the original surgery for his rectal cancer. He is left with a permanent colostomy and large incisional hernias, abdominal distension, extensive surgical scars and an unsightly skin graft.

We helped our client make a medical negligence compensation claim against the defendant hospital on the basis that the leak (and our client’s subsequent injuries) were caused by negligent surgical technique during the original operation. If the surgery had been performed correctly, our client would have recovered within three months of the operation and would have been able to return to work as a carpenter.

The defendant hospital admitted liability (responsibility) for our client’s injuries. The claim concluded with an out-of-court settlement of £290,000.

If you have suffered a serious injury or disability as a result of medical negligence and would like to find out more about making a claim, you can talk to one of our specialist solicitors, free and confidentially, by contacting us here.